10 minutes alone with the butcher of Auschwitz

Discussion in 'The Holocaust' started by Rav4, Nov 5, 2013.

  1. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    My father told me that during the liberation of Westertimke 2IG were about to mete out similar revenge on the guards - until, that is, the prisoners themselves intervened, explaining that the guards were in fact only recent replacements.
  2. canuck

    canuck Token Colonial Patron

    A former Canadian Army POW told me of a strong revenge motive on the part of himself and his newly liberated comrades in May 1945. Upon release, they acquired weapons and walked to the nearest town to search for several guards who had been particularly harsh to them. He confirmed that they all had lethal intent but it was clear that all the POW camp staff had the good sense to leave the area so nothing came of it.
  3. Hesmond

    Hesmond Well-Known Member

    The film and interview with the Channel 4 documentry was the Dachau liberation , the full combat film is worth trying to watch .
    Margaret Ann likes this.
  4. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    Yes as I said Dachau.

    But the one I remember is the one on the liberation of the camps and Belsen in particular.It was produced in 1985 by Sidney Bernstein,later the founder of Granada TV, for the 40th anniversary of the liberation of the camps.His version was"A Painful Remainder.Evidence for All Mankind" under "Memory of the Camps"

    He served in the British Army and was on the staff of the PWD unit attached to SHAEF...He was quickly into Belsen to record its horror.Then for the the 1985 production,he also drew on footage shot by Alfred Hitchcock on the liberation of the camps in 1945.

    I have Sidney Bernstein's documentary but have not viewed it for some time but as I remember, it is an excellent reference for what evil practices were conducted by the Third Reich.

    As regards the people in attendance when a camp was liberated...take the case of Belsen, a takeover with the Germans and British Army, an arrangement conducted with what an observer might call, diplomatic standards.The British Army was received by the commander,Kramer and his staff who acted as though no crimes against humanity had been perpetrated...remember seeing photographs of Kramer obviously having received rough treatment on his apprehension. There was little potential threat from the released inmates for they were in such a poor medical condition,their immediate need was medical treatment,nourishment,clothing and shelter.

    However,the German war economy was underpinned by forced labour and the their liberation posed an opportunity for these people to retaliate against the German local population for their illegal use as forced labour and the harsh treatment meted out to them by the Master Race...so much so that Allied intervention in the west was the only solution to prevent excesses as scores were settled.Even before the capture of Cologne,forced labourers along with Russian POWs were roaming in districts, leading to so called criminal activities.The German response was arbitrary executions by the Gestapo/SD where the offenders were caught.

    Saw a report of British prisoners in East Germany who,on release by the Russians were confined to camp for the same reason,one would think,until formal arrangements had been made to return them home but the POWs had other ideas and many took the opportunity to act as free men and take their share of any gains that could be made in the district.
    Margaret Ann likes this.
  5. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    I forgot to add,one of the best documentaries made after D Day was "D Day to Berlin"..covers the path of US Forces from D Day to Berlin.

    It was made by George Stevens who went on the produce Hollywood films postwar.He was in charge of a US Army film unit which was instructed by Eisenhower to follow the US Army campaign in Europe from the Normandy landings...often instructed to go to places such as the liberation of Paris and sober events at certain locations as excesses were revealed such as concentration camps liberated by US forces.He did, but having access to colour film, produced his own version...Eisenhower received the black and white version.Dora at Nordhausen and Buchenwald are well covered as is the winter slog through the Ardennes in late 1944 and early 1945.Recorded are the views of the cameramen involved,updated to 1984...some might be surprised by them after 40 years.

    George Steven's son found his late father's work in the early 1980's and it was shown for the 40th anniversary of D Day on the BBC.It has been shown again on the BBC and may be available on DVD...well worth watching a dimension in the liberation of Western Europe.

Share This Page